Beyond the Noise: Revisiting Citizenship by Investment Programs in the Caribbean

Citizenship by Investment: What is it? Where it came from?

It was a Caribbean country, St. Kitts and Nevis, the first in establishing a CBI program. In 1984, the year when the program was established, the island’s economy was in rough shape. The traditional sugar cane industry was in decline and the country was increasingly relying on tourism to earn foreign exchange. Precisely, the CBI program was built with the intention of attracting foreign investment through wealthy individuals in need of facilitating international mobility with a stronger passport.

But what is citizenship by investment?

The term is self-explanatory. Citizenship by investment is the process of acquiring a second citizenship through the investment of significant resources into a country’s economy. This option is usually directed to wealthy or high net worth individuals. In many cases, applicants can acquire their citizenship after buying real estate but almost every country offering this program also has the option to invest directly into government projects and funds.

What’s in it for receptive countries?

It’s clear now why people from around the world would like to hold a second passport from one of these Caribbean countries: favorable tax regimes, visa-free travel to 120+ countries –in the cases of Curacao and St. Kitts and Nevis you could travel to 174 countries and 156 countries respectively –and we haven’t even talked about beautiful beaches under the Caribbean weather.

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